Find a Job with the LinkedIn for BlackBerry Smartphones App
New professional networking app can supercharge your job search
Imagine walking into an important job interview armed with information about your interviewer's work experience, education, and professional interests. Would that be useful? That is now possible with the new LinkedIn® for BlackBerry smartphones app from LinkedIn, which lets you view profiles of more than 65 million professionals worldwide, in real time, from virtually any location.
The LinkedIn for BlackBerry smartphones app brings the powerful networking capabilities of LinkedIn to your BlackBerry® smartphone. In this article find out the app's features and get insight into how LinkedIn for BlackBerry smartphones can help you land your next job.
What is LinkedIn?
As you may know, LinkedIn is a social networking site aimed at your professional life. It now includes profiles of more than 65 million professionals worldwide. A new member signs up every second, and 1 million members join every two weeks.
The real test of any professional tool, of course, is whether it helps people get things done. In that sense LinkedIn is a huge success.
Because of its exclusive professional focus, in many ways LinkedIn has become the modern equivalent to the resume. Your profile can include your work experience, education, affiliations, and so on.
But unlike paper-based resumes, with LinkedIn you can display recommendations from other members for work you have done—a powerful tool for building your credibility. Equally important is building a strong network, as this will help you make contacts with other professionals.
Companies can also post profiles on LinkedIn, which is useful for researching job openings. Research In Motion, for example, has its own profile, with links to employee profiles, company news feeds, and statistics.
What is the LinkedIn for BlackBerry Smartphone app?
With its professional focus, it was natural for LinkedIn to bring its professional network to BlackBerry smartphones. The app is available for free from BlackBerry App World™. With it you can search and view member profiles, send messages, and add professionals to your network—all from your BlackBerry smartphone. As of now you cannot view company profiles or search for job openings with the app, but LinkedIn tells us that these may be included in a future release.
The app tightly integrates with several key built-in BlackBerry features. For example, LinkedIn messages appear in your Messages folder, marked by a LinkedIn icon. From Messages you can reply directly to other members. When you make an appointment in your BlackBerry Calendar, you can view the attendees' LinkedIn profiles, if available—a great way to get inside information for your next appointment. The app also augments your existing BlackBerry Contacts list with profile photos and updated information.
- Lindsey Pollak, bestselling author and career consultant.
Turn a cold conversation into a warm introduction
How can the LinkedIn for BlackBerry smartphone app help you find work? Let's say you are moments from an important interview. At the last minute, the hiring manager lets you know that the group VP will be joining. So who is this person?
Pull out your BlackBerry smartphone, open the LinkedIn for BlackBerry app, and find the VP's profile. Now you can see the VP's:
- Job description
- Degree of separation from yourself
You notice that the VP graduated from the same college that you did. OK, now you can turn a cold conversation into a warm introduction.
What else can you do?
Here are more examples of how to use LinkedIn for BlackBerry smartphones for job searches:
- Research: Vet potential supervisors by checking out their profiles.
- Networking: How many times has someone said, "You should talk to so and so. You would be perfect for their team?" Now you can look at the referral's profile on the spot and even fire off a message.
- On-the-go access to referrals: Request referrals from your network for job openings. You will be surprised how quickly your network connects you with opportunities.
Tip: Create a meaningful LinkedIn profile and keep it up to date
The techniques outlined in this article mean that potential employers will be looking at your professional profile. Consequently your profile needs to be good! Follow these guidelines:
- Post a complete profile, including job descriptions, education, awards, interests, etc.
- Add a professional photo of yourself, which adds personality and credibility.
- Get recommendations from colleagues, managers, direct reports—whoever will say good things about your work. (Recommendations are powerful marketing tools.)
- Build credibility by recommending books in your field.
- Be easy to find by using keywords with which people will search.
- Spell check and proofread everything. Few things defeat a good impression quicker than a sloppy profile.
- Ask questions and post answers to LinkedIn groups in your field; this gets your name out and establishes your expertise.
An example: Seven steps to get a new job
You can use a combination of the LinkedIn website and the LinkedIn for BlackBerry smartphones app to supercharge your next job search:
- Find job openings (website): Use the LinkedIn website's Jobs tab to search for openings in your field. You can search by keyword, company name, job title, location, function, industry, and so on. Apply for the positions that interest you.
- ID the hiring managers (website): Applying for the position is not enough, however. To get noticed you need to reach the decision makers. So search the company's LinkedIn profile to identify the decision makers you need to reach.
- Look for common contacts (website): Check the hiring managers' LinkedIn profiles for any mutual LinkedIn contacts. If you find one, ask your mutual contact for an introduction. The aim is for a personalized introduction instead of a cold call.
- Set up an interview (smartphone): Use your BlackBerry smartphone to ask the decision makers to an interview.
- Research the people you are interviewing with (app): Note conversation starters, such as common interests, contacts, education, etc.
- Update your status (app): After the meeting, use your BlackBerry smartphone to update your LinkedIn status by saying good things about the people you just met. This gives your interviewers a good impression, and also alerts your network that you are searching for a new position.
- Add the hiring managers to your network (app): When you get the job, add the people you met to your LinkedIn network!
If you haven't signed up for LinkedIn, do so now. Create your professional profile. Then download the LinkedIn for BlackBerry smartphones app and start using it whenever you're on the go!